United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1874
[Utah], pp. 276-277 PDF (991.0 KB)
276 REPORT OF THE COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS. be erected some three miles down the river, near the tillable land of the "bottom." The warehouse has been rendered serviceable for the reception of the Indian goods this fall. The dwelling-houses have yet to be repaired to render them fit for winter. The stockade is past repair, and must be entirely rebuilt. The matter of the removal of the agency should be decided at once, and the agent should be informed whether an appropriation of money will be made for putting up new buildings, for it will be necessary to make very thorough repairs upon the present ones if they are to be occupied another season. Very respectfully, your most obedient servant, E. H. DANFORTH, United States Indian Agent. Hon. E. P. SMITH, Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Washington, D. C. UINTAII VALLEY AGENCY, UTAH TERRITORY, September 22, 1874. SIR : In obedience to instructions contained in Department circular of August 17, I sub- mit the following as my fourth annual report of the agency under my charge: I am pleased to be able to state that the quiet and general prosperity indicated in my last report still continues, and that what was then true relative to the progress of my Indians in agricultural industry is eminently so now. What was stated relative to their progress in civilization, with distrust and diffidence, can now be affirmed with a good degree of assurance. The same salutary influences that were at work then have continued to produce results in a more noticeable degree. INDIANS-THEIR NUMBER, INDUSTRY, CIVILIZATION, HEALTH, ETC. It will be noticed by my statistical report that the number of our Indians is less than that given last year, being made to conform to the enumeration made by Richard Komas last fall and received after my report was written. His enumeration, as given in Messrs. Ingalls and Powell's report, was 556, which, with the estimated increase, makes our present number 575. It is my opinion, as well as that of my late interpreter and others, that, although the report of Mr. Komas embraces as many Indians as are at our agency at any one time, yet it does not embrace as many as make our agency their rallying point and headquarters dur- ing the year, hence I am still inclined to think that my estimate, viz, 800, as given in my last report, was not too high. Our Indians have shown a marked improvement in their industrial habits. More of them than at any former period have engaged in farming. The results to those who engaged in cultivating the soil last year was so satisfactory and so manifest, that many of those whom we were accustomed to regard as the most hopeless cases have engaged in agriculture with very encouraging results. There is not only an increase in the amount of labor performed, but also an improvement in the skill and efficiency of those who labor, as wel. as a very con- siderable increase in the products ot their labor. For an estimate of the products of the In dian and agency farms I refer to my statistical report herewith But our Indians have not confined their labors to the cultivation of the soil ; they have made more than 600 rods of fence, cutting, hauling, and laying up the poles themselves. Such labor was never performed by them before on this agency, and as it was done per- fectly voluntarily, we regard it as an evidence of decided progress, and as affording good ground for hope in the future. The progress of our Indians in or toward civilization, it must still be admitted, is slow, but we think steady and marked. The better element among them seems to be gaining strength, and their wild habits and usages generally falling into disuse; they are more and more disposed to adopt civilized habits and dress-to submit to authority and be guided by the advice of the Government and its agents. There is a general kindness of manner and expression indicative of the breaking up of the stoical and savage nature, showing a gradual preparation for the more active and efficient elements of civilization and Christianity. " Polygamy, however, and other evidences of bar- barism still exist and show themselves. but we think not quite so boldly as formerly. They have still very inadequate ideas in regard to chastity or the obligations of the marriage relation. Their health has generally been good, better we think than last year, though there have been more deaths, thosethat have occurred being mostly from chronic diseases. We think the im- provement in general health results from their improved industrial habits and regular means of subsistence. Most of our Indians have remained on the reservation, attending more dili- gently to their crops than usual. Some small bands have gone on hunting and visiting expe- ditions, but have usually made arrangements with some of their friends to attend to their crops in their absence.
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